Power of the network enhances TomTom’s real-time traffic updates

I was thinking about this announcement from TomTom and Vodafone and started considering the power of what this could do for real-time traffic reporting.

TomTom and Vodafone have just partnered to create a new type of commercial traffic data system based on thousands of mobile phones that will describe traffic conditions in real-time. The idea is that by using the regular signaling information between the handset and the base station, the location and speed of the handset can be determined at any given time. Combine that information across a region among thousands of drivers who become data points, and a picture emerges of how backed a given freeway really is — enabling TomTom to provide detours much more quickly than previously possible. [Engadget]

There does not seem to be any reason from where I sit why this can’t apply across carriers. If you subscribe to TomTom Plus, which you need to in order to get traffic info, you already have a mobile device feeding the GPS a data connection. Add to that the ability to track your friends with a buddy list (another plus service) but treat the tracking for traffic rather than “how you doing” and you could get a very smart system. I have no idea how many devices TomTom has sold but limiting this to a single carrier will defeat the potential network effect.

This is the exact offering of Dash Navigation… I’d imagine it’s the reason for TomTom’s move. I’m glad that TomTom is looking to continue enhancing the functionality of their devices… My TomTom G0 510 has been excellent in my daily commute.

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4 Replies to “Power of the network enhances TomTom’s real-time traffic updates”

  1. Excellent news, I live in DC where I would give my left arm to avoid any type of congestion. Glad to hear that you are happy with the 510, I’ve heard high accolades for the 510 and 910 from various GPS reviews.

  2. I have an E61 and have tried with no luck to connect with my tomtom 510 for the plus services; other wise it works great connect with my phone for hands free. HELP anyone been looking for answers tomtom has not been helpful; i have tmobile with tzones

  3. No issues here – though occasionally it takes more than one try to connect for some reason on all my phones. I’m on Cingular and I chose the MEdiaWorks option. Works with my E61, N73 and N93

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